Tips for Building Motivation and Drive
Stohlman: What are some key ways parents and coaches can instill a drive and motivation in their players?
Johnson: This is a good question and something that is very much a passion of mine. I think it is really vital that parents and coaches communicate. This is especially important at the youth level because there are a lot of things parents know about their player that can help the coach understand and develop skills. To foster communication, first, encourage your son or daughter to be on time and mentally and physically prepared for every practice and game. This is one area that parents can really give their son or daughter more attention. Another important aspect is to have a great attitude, be excited, and have passion. This means encouraging the child to go out and be the best that he or she can be for that day. I tell my players the most important thing is to come with a passion, enthusiasm and excitement and try to make themselves a better player today than they were yesterday. If a player comes with work ethic and determination at practice, I guarantee you by the end of the year, end of the month or even end of the week, they are going to be a better player than they were in the beginning. To me that is what it is all about - showing kids what hard work and determination can accomplish.
Editor’s Note: Special thanks to Jim Johnson for this valuable advice.